Union Township voters asked about recreational marijuana

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UNION TOWNSHIP -

Voters in one Union County town were asked to voice their opinion on allowing the sale of recreational marijuana in their town.

Union Township residents were asked the question on the ballot this past Election Day. But township officials say that they aren’t planning on legalizing marijuana just yet.

“It was just a way of testing the temperatures of the township just to see what their thought on it where,” says Union Township Committeeman Manuel Figueiredo.

The township residents were almost split on the decision, with nearly 54 percent voting for allowing the sale of recreational marijuana. Forty-six voted against it. Those percentages are based on the more than 13,000 residents who voted in the referendum.

RELATED: Bergen County town latest to ban recreational marijuana sales
RELATED: New Jersey lawmakers delay recreational marijuana vote

The state of New Jersey would have to legalize recreational marijuana first before any municipalities could start to make any moves on it. Some towns have preemptively passed laws either to allow the sale or ban the sale of marijuana.

The legalization of recreational marijuana was a major part of Gov. Phil Murphy’s campaign. But movement on that initiative has stalled. A vote originally planned for the end of October was delayed.

Figueiredo says that Union Township officials wouldn’t make any decisions until legalization was passed by the state.

"Only at that point we would measure the pros and cons and see where were at because again there's a lot of intricacies in the decision,” he says.

Two other New Jersey municipalities had similar referendums. Vineland voters were asked if they would allow medical marijuana in their town. They voted to approve plan. Bridgeton voters had the chance to vote yes or no for recreational marijuana with three separate questions. Voters chose to allow it only if it was an industrial-zoned area.

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